University of Cambridge > > Plant Sciences Departmental Seminars > Algal-bacterial consortia: towards the commercialisation of microalgae for industrial biotechnology

Algal-bacterial consortia: towards the commercialisation of microalgae for industrial biotechnology

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A major roadblock to the commercialisation of algae for industrial biotechnology is the contamination of cultures via adventitious organisms, such as bacteria. However, algal-bacterial interactions are common in nature, and many algae require bacterial symbionts for the provision of key nutrients such as vitamin B12 . In order to improve the commercial prospects of large-scale microalgal culture, I am investigating the potential for algal-bacterial consortia to reduce contamination by adventitious bacteria and improve the stability and productivity of algal cultures. Utilising a model algal-bacterial symbiosis between the green alga Lobomonas rostrata and the rhizobial bacterium Mesorhizobium loti, I have investigated the role of bacteria in the phycosphere and the effects of bacteria on algal growth. I will present my research into the potential probiotic effects of mutualistic bacteria and describe a novel protocol for the co-cryopreservation of algae and bacteria, within the scope of industrial biotechnology.

This talk is part of the Plant Sciences Departmental Seminars series.

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